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Goblin Squad Member. 1,131 posts (1,714 including aliases). No reviews. 1 list. No wishlists. 4 aliases.

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I'm quite partial to the theory of multiple Gods having access to the same portfolio, but because of that, they are ALL responsible for it.

If two or more Sun Gods start to go to war over total dominion of their Portfolio, you could end up with sweltering heatwaves, world-wide drought or even two suns, smaller and weaker, in the sky. And that's where the other Sun Gods, and the other Gods whose domains are now at risk or under dire threat move, potentially creating an all-in divine scrum to stop the conflict and causing all manner of divine and mortal chaos as the world reels under all this Godly power being thrown around and warping the world and it's denizens in the process.

Divine shenanigans and petty godling tantrums over having to share their 'toys' can be so much fun for a DM to use to really put the screws to a campaign, not just the PCs.

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And they generally aren't part of the 'Core' of the game, but rather from fluff and 'expansion' material.

I can understand James and the rest of Paizo wanted to keep Golarion and Pathfinder a more 'pure' fantasy, but I do feel having Golarion be divided between two larger continents, one side very Eberron in that the playable characters there are divided by national and religious lines rather than racial ones, while the other side could have been very much the opposite, divided more along racial and political lines rather than religion or nationality, and the conflict between these two macro-societies along with their internal disputes with their member-nations, outside forces, the fall of Aroden and the like could have been used to prevent a WoW-like situation where the two big superpowers just bash away at each other and plunder everything smaller than them for resources and allies.

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Rysky wrote:
Set wrote:
And yeah, the humans being the only race to have multiple cultures and languages and nationalities and pantheons of gods, is kinda boring. A setting where two different elves or dwarves could follow radically different national or cultural standards, but not be mechanically different 'sub-races,' would be interesting.

Very, I try to avoid monoculture in my setting.

Though different languages would most likely be a logistics nightmare and fall under minutia that not a lot I suspect would appreciate and would hamper gameplay more than illustrate.

Eh, if you run with the Theory that Common is basically a polished pigeon language that everybody uses for trade and basic diplomacy, and national or racial languages are used for more complicated conversations, or just to stop random bystanders from other countries listening in, it makes sense.

I mean, the standard Golarion campaign has different racial languages for nearly every 'race' of Human, but everybody still speaks Common for simplicity's sake so that players and GMs don't have to spend all their class skill points in Linguistics just to be able to buy a loaf of bread from a merchant.

That said you raise a bloody valid point of over-complication, and that's something I am guilty of given less than half a chance. I think if Paizo actually did use a 'different nationalities' rather than 'different races', having Dwarven from one country and Dwarven from another be mostly identical, but the 'dialect' between the two could easily pin one Dwarf coming from an area that could raise eyebrows or cause swords to be drawn, which could be an interesting wrinkle for players trying to infiltrate a rival nation or get away from a homeland they don't believe in, or give a GM heart-failure when the PCs pick up on their Linguistic or Sense Motive checks and start to use in-universe reasons to start to dog-pile verbally on the Dwarf to figure out why he or she is in a region her 'people' normally shun or might be hostile towards.

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*deep breath*

Okay, these are just the things that absolutely bug me with the setting.

1) Not enough 'non-standard' races, ie the usual seven races, Halflings, Gnomes, Humans, Dwarves, Elves, Half-Elves, Half-Orcs, running around. I'd have preferred to see some historically traditional-enemies-of-the-players races having their own kingdoms and being world powers in their own right. A Hobgoblin empire that's remarkably forward-thinking and quite civilized ... but accepts slavery and expansionism and bigotry towards unregistered arcanists quite openly too. A nation-wide network of Kobolds who compete with the Dwarves for economic dominance of the metal and stone-based industries. Ogre Mages who run authoritarian but still honorable empires alongside Kitsune, Tengu and Humans, stuff that makes the players question who is really the monster here.

I wanted Paizo to shake the tree far harder than they did when they created Golarion, to step away from bored, tired and, I do apologise if this comes across as overly hostile, cowardly writing where Humans are inevitably the greatest good and the strongest power. Under-dogs are always far more enjoyable, IMHO, but having Humanity be divided not only by religion and territory, but also by how each nation, religious group and faction dealt with non-humans and their different faiths and societies would have been fascinating.

Do you ally with the strong economic power, even if they are non-human and have odd cultural quirks, or do you stand against them to be with your fellow man ... who may hate you for your religious beliefs and control of hotly contested resources? The question of the alien or the familiar should also be tempered with the actions of said alien and familiar, and should be something that players and GMs alike squirm on the hook when they're making their choices between the two in a situation where there's only a yes or no method of resolution.

Humanity is a pack of bastards at the best of times, and I'd have dearly loved to seen that explored far further and taken to the hilt, that the world of Golarion is a crap-sack, but Humans and the other 'default' races are no less crap-sack than any of the other denizens that live there.

2) Having pantheons made up solely of goodies and baddies. Having racial pantheons that work together against opposing racial pantheons, and then having other pantheons of multi-racial groups dedicated to the causes of Good, Chaos, Law and Evil would have been very interesting, especially if Gods might occupy places in two or three Pantheons at once, and might end up being the ambassadors or peace-makers if these Pantheons start to come into conflict or have rival members trying to claim sole dominion of a specific portfolio. A racial pantheon could have members running the gamut of all Alignments, and each pantheon, be their racial, multi-racial or alignment-based would then have a unique flavour to them that could be used heavily to create plot-hooks, tension between nations and religious groups as missionaries and evangelists run around and the various nations have to decide who can safely preach in their borders and who cannot ... and how to deal with troublesome cults and religions that threaten the nation's control of it's own people ...

Imagine the chaos of, let's say, four Elven nations that have between them three Elven Pantheons and a Mixed-Race Pantheon. Elf Nation A might worship a strict, xenophobic Pantheon that demands total obedience from all Elves, staying within the territory of the Elven Kingdoms and the eradication of mixed bloodlines of Elves and 'lesser creatures', and whose followers are given sanction to make it happen by force if necessary, while Nation B and C might worship both a second Elven Pantheon revolving around freedom, truth and the embrace of magic and the Mixed-Race Pantheon in an effort to connect with and uplift the other races, while Elven nation C also worships, along with nation D, the Third Elven Pantheon that only likewise doesn't like other races but isn't as adverse to them as the first Pantheon, but instead instructs their Elven followers to spread out and conquer the 'lesser' races from within, through diplomacy, economic and assassination-themed methods to 'save' the world from the machinations of the other Gods.

Boom, you've got a shifting dynamic structure to play around with. There's a mixture of religious and political intrigue, internal strife, the Elves aren't a one-note race of 'we live in tune with nature and are magical pretty folk' and there's no end to the plot-hooks.

And that's just four Elven kingdoms who may or may not be separated by terrain, other nations or just hotly-contested borders. That's not including their interactions with their neighbours, the problems of the people within those kingdoms and the machinations of those Pantheons squabbling with each other over followers, and the power larger groups of followers may grant a God or Pantheon.

3) This is a far more personal whine than any complaint about Paizo itself, but I would have dearly loved to have seen an entirely 'mongrel' nation have appeared as an actual, if minor, world-power, ruled and populated by Half-Orcs, Half-Elves, Tieflings and other maligned and minor 'half' races, basically a mecca of trade and relative solace for the 'bastards' of Golarion, formed by former slaves, disenfranchised raiders and forward-thinking adventurers long ago and is now just as civilized, if slightly belligerent towards their ancestral 'enemies' than is truly necessary even at the best of times, as any of their neighbouring nations, which brings me to my final complaint ...

4) Nations being predominantly one-race with a minority of others is one thing, but seeing particularly older nations not having far larger numbers of other races annoys me. Having folks saying "I am Theyvian" not because they are humans or elves or whatever race lives there, but because they were born there. I'd have preferred to have seen a smattering more races that are far more multiracial than what we've got thus far, and to have nationality cause more issues for players travelling than their race.

An Elf from X may get more trouble from traders from Y because of their nationality rather than their race, while two Halflings from two different nations might see each other as more alien than the Gnoll from a third nation due to differing religious beliefs and social customs.

That said, these are basically my only real complaints with the setting that actively irk me.

Goblin Squad Member

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Now, eventually, when the 'Farm/Ranch' PoI or Building makes it into the game, here's a couple of thinks I would love to see make it into the mix.

Skills/Badges for 'crafting' animals. And no, I don't mean Doctor Moraue or however it's spelled, I mean breeding specific types of animals.

Player could specialise in 'fast breeding', resulting in faster 'generation' of livestock/mounts.

Player could specialise in 'multiple breeding', resulting in slightly higher 'spawns' of livestock/mounts.

Player could specialise in 'quality breeding', resulting in a slightly slower 'generation' of livestock/mounts with high stats/better quality resources harvested from them.

Players who dedicate themselves to breeding might even call upon adventurers for specific creatures from the wild to interbreed into their stock to create desired traits, or to recover specific plants or even magical essences to feed to their stock to create specific, short-lived effects when breeding the animals together to create something new.

High End 'Breeder'-focused Players might be able to produce Half-Dragon Mounts, or even Cattle, which could serve as powerful mounts for front-line combatants, or in the case of the cattle, a relatively cheap source of 'Dragon Hide' that doesn't involve waiting for a Dragon Escalation to happen.

Of course, that could also open the door to a Cowpocalypse as the Scaly Bovines, with their enhanced intellects, decide to rain fire and misery on their two-legged oppressors.

Goblin Squad Member

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Wouldn't that be hilarious.

Group of Elves start an escalation, local PCs go "Oh, okay, we'll ally with these NPCs."

Then Elves turn around and slaughter other PCs who are building a settlement in a Hex containing an Elven ruin, and start to build their own Settlement, populated solely by Elves.

Cue "Did that just f*&#ing happen?" from the allies of this nominally 'good' Escalation of Elf 'nationalists'. Congratulations, you've made an alliance with the Elves ... who will kill anyone from the other Races who sets foot on the sovereign ground of their former holdings ... because you're their ally, you'll just get a Trespasser Flag.

Whoops ....

Now what the above scenario begs to ask ... what penalties are there for breaking an Alliance with NPCs?

Goblin Squad Member

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Here's how I'd make an MMO.

Have the choices a character makes not go away, and be as unique as possible.

Be an a&&$+#*? It'll reflect in how the NPCs treat you in the future.

Be a nice guy/gal? Same again.

Kill everyone and everything in the room? Same again, the NPCs will know you as a kill 'em all type of person.

Use Diplomacy to get through? Same again.

Use Illusions and Charm spells? Same again.

Have gear be something that's useful but not character-defining.

Have players make everything that they'll need, rather than the teeth-grinding frustration of the RNG system, which only ever seems to sodomize the player base in an effort to make them play longer.

A setting where the pretty races are not always good, and the ugly races are not always bad.

Morally grey choices, in addition to the White Knight and the Black Assassin choices.

Your starting race decides your class, your nominal faction and your starting location, but once you finish the obligatory training chain-quest, you're free to head on over to the other side of the border and work on being their guy, rather than working for your starting faction.

Oh, hey, guess which developing MMO hits most of these wants of mine?

Pathfinder Online.

Don't fall into the pit that WoW's dug for the genre, guys. You've got a solid backing with the Pathfinder Setting, now it's just a case of getting everything sound mechanically. We believe in you, as the Kickstarter proved, as the furious debates on these forums prove, as we'll continue to prove in the future.

We know you won't let us down.

Goblin Squad Member

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Actually, that raises an interesting question on Crafting Badges and player-made crafting/refining kits/booths/buildings.

How hard would it be to give players the option to pick badges out of a selection that might grant them the ability to refine a lower-grade Ore into a medium-grade metal, or a medium-grade herb into a high-grade component?

What about a gathering badge that can allow the player to increase the amount they can harvest from a node, at the cost of lowering their chance of getting a higher 'grade' of material?

Would it be worth-while to pursue badges that might allow your character to gain some quirky abilities in their gathering skill-tree to add some variety to what people can bring back from the wilds, the mines and the farms?

And what about Kits/Refining Buildings? Would it be worth-while to have Settlements being able to tweak their structures to take advantage of a plentiful but low-grade vein of precious ore nearby to up their % of refining higher-grade finished goods from a bulk of lower-grade materials? Should it be allowed, given that control of a high-grade vein would provoke outright war between settlements.

Goblin Squad Member

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Thing with World PvP and the 'sole server' plan for Pathfinder Online?

People who run around saving people are going to be treated like kings and local heroes, for in a World-PvP sandbox, somebody who sees you bleeding out, runs over and heals you and then helps you get back to town is going to be a person everybody wants in their Company, or at least on their friends list, while the people who run around slaughtering everything that twitches will become the server's pinata, hunted down day after day, week after week, until they abandon their character and roll a new one ... with years of grinding ahead of them to reach the power they once had, while their victims keep on chugging along, well ahead of them now.

Who're you gonna trust? Fantasy-World Superman or Fantasy-World Joker? My money's on the guy who sees me weak and helpless and doesn't immediately run over and turkey-slap me to death.

Goblin Squad Member

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Hey, no clothing means lower AC.

Also it's sort of a great big flag screaming "TOOOOOOOOOOOL!" above the players head and will reflect poorly on their reputation amongst the other players.

It's funny in a "Haha NO..." not a "Haha I'm gonna do that!" way, or at least I hope so.

Goblin Squad Member

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I tell you what, I see a band of naked or pantless bandits coming towards me, I don't care what Rep I'll lose, I am abandoning my post.

My ass is sacred ground ...

But yes, being a Bandit should be something you think hard about.

A Bandit MIGHT have High Rep, but that might be only because they chose to be a bandit AFTER getting the skills they wanted.

That said, I am in favour of player-made training kits so that a low-rep person CAN level their skills ... but they'll always be behind SOMEBODY, and they will always need somebody with a High-Rep to sell them, trade them or give them the training kits.

Goblin Squad Member

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Distilleries hidden deep in 'Hideouts' located in the wild Hexes, producing high-grade moonshine.

Smuggling rings bringing contraband such as poisons, narcotics, moonshine and the like into Lawful Settlements.

So-called 'Black Markets', hosted by high-rep Evil Companies and Factions, where Bandits and immoral Merchants can get together and trade booty for goods, or make compacts for safe passage for specific caravans.

Do we need or want these things in Pathfinder online? If we do, how should we go about the creation, use and destruction of these things?

I know I'd love to be able to be a brewer in the game, producing the Mead, or Beer, or Ale, as a nice little side-line business for my adventuring character, or as the 'business front' for my crafting character.

Alcohol might serve as a Development Index resource in addition to the old uses as an ingredient for a molotov cocktail or plain old social lubrication.

But the concept of Smuggling also appeals to me, especially if there's a risk that your wagon can be converted to have hidden 'areas' on it where contraband can be stashed and need a trained badge to attempt to locate. A settlement that bans specific items could become a proverbial gold-mine for the smuggler with the moxy and the gear to get the goods inside the city walls.

Bottles of high-grade alcohol that the local taverns can use to spike their own drinks to get their patrons drunker faster and divest them of more coins, poisons for PCs looking to eliminate the competition in an untraceable manner, illegal narcotics (Which would be fascinating if there's an addiction mechanic involved), so on and so forth.

I can see an infamous 'Black Market' being less a game-mechanic and more an in-game 'invitation' by powerful PC factions to come to Hex "X", to a specific land-mark, and bring your goods, your coins and your slaves. Held every real-life month, the Black Market is the scourge of the Settlements, where stolen goods are traded, broken down and remade, 'slaves', NPCs stolen from PC Settlements, are branded, broken and disseminated throughout the Bandit Clans and Evil PC Settlements, and wealth taken from sacked settlements and raided caravans is traded for goods the Bandits and Raiders can't easily manufacture themselves.

Finding the Black Market without an invitation could be grounds for slavery or death for the unfortunates in question, but assuming you could get back to the Settlement and let the Factions know what's what, it could become a huge player-driven event as the Settlements unite to deliver a killing blow to the Bandit Clans and Evil Trade-Companies, but this is a collection of some of the most prolific and powerful Bandits and Raiders in the game, and they won't go down easily, or without payback at a later date.

Goblin Squad Member

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The problem with Table-Top translating to an MMO is that in the Table Top, unless your GM is a right bastard, you will generally be able to re-roll a new character of the average level of the party, with the 'correct' level of wealth/gear for your PC's character level, and play continues.

In an MMO, that's bypassing huge numbers of the content and sidestepping a lot of the busy-time that they use to make you play, and pay, for longer. It just does not translate well between the two mediums.

That said, I would love to see death in Pathfinder actually setting you back a significant amount of XP, even to the point it might 'deactivate' your latest Badge skill, until you recover enough XP to 're-qualify' for it.

This is not and should not be the offspring of a Bloopers reel and the Darwin Awards, people. Death needs to have a real cost, but one that won't send new players or curious players from MMOs screaming from the room. As much as I love a challenging game, there needs to be enough slack in it to allow for off-days, lag issues (God, who hasn't been stuck at their keyboard, screaming in frustration, as the WoW servers lag and your character stands there with the Derp face and eats all the murderous AoE attacks from a powerful Rare-Spawn?), 'HAAAAAX!' from cheating players and buggy mobs or mechanics that might spazz out at precisely the wrong moment.

Goblin Squad Member

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A Fighter who is sick of being stabbed in the face every six seconds by the mobs and taking a fireball to the back of the head six seconds after that from his 'ally'.

Goblin Squad Member

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Given it'll take 2.5-3 years to 'cap', I would be horrified at the concept of Perma-death.

If the game allowed you to roll a new toon with slightly lower 'attributes' (ie, you can assign your skill-trees/badges how you like, but you'll be 3 months 'below' what your original character was), then yeah, I could get behind a 'Perma-Death' function if you rack up too many 'deaths' in game and Pharasma decided to pull a Darwin Awards on you for the benefit of future generations, but with the sheer volume of time alone necessitated to make your character grow and become 'you' or what you want in the game, that's way too harsh and would drive off far too many players.

Goblin Squad Member

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Yes Steelwing, but as the Settlement is being built and upgraded, more buildings can be added till the 'cap'.

So that adds another layer of complexity to the Settlement. Do you add lots of 'Houses' to attract players, or do you build more Training Halls instead to offer a higher quality of training?

Two Settlements might work together, one being mostly housing and infrastructure, the other being mostly Training Halls and Mage Towers, with a dedicated team of players using Wagons and/or renting mounts and/or spells to ferry people back and forth at a cost, which is shared evenly between the two Settlements.

Goblin Squad Member

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Lifedragn and Nihimon make excellent points. Much like the design philosophy that we've been exposed to now, in regards to the 'food' debate, Goblin Works seems to be aiming for 'bonuses' to the characters, rather than a flat negative/positive outlook.

Settlements are obviously going to want dedicated individuals, rather than us 'Filthy Casuals', but at the same point, a warm body is a warm body, and it's better to have them working for you rather than getting pissed off at your 'elitist' attitude and going to ally with your rivals.

Maybe a 'Population Limit' should apply to badges and the like, ie it's a goal to reach, rather than a barrier you can't get over. Having X-amount of accounts (regardless of how many actual PCs are involved) forming some sort of long-term connection to a Settlement will unlock building opportunities and trade possibilities that a less-populous Settlement cannot reach?

Goblin Squad Member

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I obviously didn't outline my 'Camp' function too well.

Here's how I see it working.

10 minute cooldown.

2 minute duration with a 30 second 'opt in' window.

When using the ability, non-hostile and allied players can 'opt in', creating a camp with you, that may have stacking benefits with more players involved.

1 players, eh, you're sleeping in the wild.

2 players, small campfire, tent. Fairly basic.

3 players, small campfire, multiple tents, some more shizzle for your nizzle going on here.

With more players getting involved, the bonuses keep on stacking up and up and up, and more players decreases the chance of a mob walking in and spanking your ass while you're camping, plus possible in-game benefits such as 'camaraderie', which might give you a positive bonus to will-saves (example) or something like that. Once again, giving players yet another reason to interact in the wilds short of "I STAB YOU IN THE FACE!" "NO! I STAB YOU IN THE FACE!"

Camping restores X amount of hit-points, based upon your badges and/or levels and/or shenanigans. It's not a full restore, but frankly, if you're out in the wilderness, you've got 1 hitpoint left and camping is your only option, it's time to get stealthy and crawl your ass back to town before a Kobold makes you her b!%&~.

It fully replenishes Mana/Spell Slots. Melee can just smack things to death all day. Archer-types run short of ammo ... and then smack things to death with slightly less grace. Casters ... as soon as they run out of spells, they're just chum for the monsters.

Goblin Squad Member

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Perhaps the Log-Out Health/Mana Regen is 10% of each per hour? Stops most forms of abuse and gives normal players a chance to log in to a full- or nearly full-health character, and sidesteps the above PvP Exploit?

Also, yes, 30 second logout timer in which your character still exists in the game world.

But really, I cannot stress the 'no regeneration' stance. Why is leveling in WoW boring? Because non-instanced or PvP combat is a breeze, unless you're severely under-geared or need to be reminded to breath every so often. Almost every class has a self-healing mechanic, and while it's useful, let's also not forget that WoW's mechanics are all focused to one goal. End-Game Raiding.

Pathfinder Online's focus is on the journey itself. Dungeons are simply a delicious side-path on that journey, not the actual goal.

How do we keep people going out into the Wilds? Herbs and rare components for healing potions, which are necessary for a Party that may not have a dedicated healer on every run. Bang, there's yet one more reason somebody will roll a Non-Combat PC, and yet more trade and interaction going on between the players.

If Health becomes a resource that's expensive to renew, Players aren't going to be the face-rollin' kamikaze nut-jobs we all encounter in most popular MMOs. Suddenly, instead of charging into the middle of a group of enemies and popping enrage/sweeping strikes/bleed/dps flag/whirlwind and then shout 'Spin to Win!' as the body parts go flying, I'm going to sit there and think how best to deal with the mobs.

Draw them into a choke-point so my team-mates can pepper them from afar while I hunker down with my tower shield and axe and physically block the choke-point?

Start lobbing Tanglefoot bags and take them apart piece-meal?

Use Illusion and/or Enchantment and/or Conjuration spells to sow discord amongst the enemy and then throw in some cheap, throw-away troops of my own while I bring the pain to the survivors?

If Health becomes a resource that's not easily replaceable, then suddenly it's a resource players will want to maximise and conserve, and that, to me at least, creates an environment of caution and planning, rather than the usual "BLAAAARGH!" facerolling that is common in the popular MMOs to date.

Goblin Squad Member

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DeciusBrutus wrote:
Any publicity that can get "Pathfinder Online" in the title of a story about ESO is great. All of the Elder Scrolls fans that follow all the ESO news just heard about PFO.

I've been talking about Pathfinder Online on the Wyrmrest Accord forums of WoW, and I think I may have converted a few of the more progressive Guilds to do some research on Pathfinder Online, simply because they love the thought of a kingdom-building game with sandbox and 'world' PvP elements.

Is that acceptable or am I crossing lines here?

Goblin Squad Member

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As a guy RPer .... give us 'Beef Cake' armor sets if we're gonna have 'Cheese Cake' armor sets.

It will make charging the Gnomes, Goblins, Kobolds and Halflings all the more hilarious if I can stun them with my +5 Codpiece of Greater S.W.A.G., and the screams of horror when they realise that Monks can literally use the Turkey Slap as a genuine part of their Flurry of Attacks move.

Yes, I am being very silly with this post, and I may or may not be a little tipsy after having indulged in the 'Savage' Drinking Game after watching the Blizzcon videos on YouTube.

Goblin Squad Member

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Yes, and that's what I'm hoping for. PvE will be extremely challenging, and PvP is widespread, so we'll see bleed-over between the two.

Two groups of players whacking away at each other get jumped by a pack of Gnolls and have to put their own personal conflict on hold to put the Gnolls down, and then after the battle with the Gnolls ... what? Do they bandage their wounds and walk away, or do they continue the fight to the bitter end, brutally wounded with most, if not all, of their friends dead or dying on the ground?

Goblin Squad Member

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I must admit, I agree with that blog.

I don't mind PvP, but I loathe with a deep and profound feeling, the giggling, faceless man-children that will find an easy target and just wail on it and lock that person down.

That's not what a PvPer does, that's Griefers ABUSING the PvP system to feel like 'real men'. These are people who get off on upsetting other people out of some twisted sense of humor, and after years of fighting them in WoW, I can tell you the instant that a Griefer can't reliably use PvP to do this, they leave.

A PvPer will rise to the challenge and keep fighting.

And yes, auto-turn and 'face-lock' on PvP targets, please and thank you, and jumping and running to decrease your stamina faster. If I can jump over a player's head and dodge an attack, whoo, go me. If I can run through a guy and stab him in the back of the neck ... that's kinda cheap.

If the PvP system can handle some sort of mild collision-detection system, or bascially ensure you are always facing your PvP target, then it cuts out a lot of the b+!*#&&! we see in MMO PvP like WoW where people run through you and can somehow immediately 180 and get you while you're turning yourself? In an instant? That's either an auto-aim hack or they've got their sensitivity turned up to The Flash levels.

Carebears ... I am a Carebear, and I agree with that blog.

Whiners are not Carebears. Carebears complain when the Griefers are ABUSING the PvP system. In a game like Pathfinder Online, it's out the gate before we even set foot inside: PvP will happen. You will die. You will lose your stuff.

If that's too much for some folks, WoW, Everquest and Guild Wars offer a no-risk route to your gear.

Everyone enjoys a good b+*@!ing when they've lost something precious and it's set them back considerably. It's natural to vent, and it's good to get it out rather than repress it and have it come back later and bite you.

Whiners will fill the airwaves with 'how unfair' each and every single failure they encounter is, and how the offending party (PvE mobs, PvPers, Gankers, Griefers, Node-Ninja's, the RNGods, etc etc) is the most horrible thing in the multiverse and how everyone should pity them and give them stuff.

PvP and PvE both take a lot of skill.

Doesn't matter if you're fighting a player or a NPC Boss, knowing what abilities are coming, and either taking steps to dodge it, stop it or mitigate it are crucial. If you're that over-geared that you can stand there and eat the Great Wyrm Red Dragon's full attack and not take a single point of damage, whoo-hoo, good for you ... still try to dodge/stop/mitigate it next time, because the other people may not be so fortunate.

Goblin Squad Member

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Just some random thoughts about 'Raiding'.

If it is a 'Criminal' action in a Player-Controlled Hex, shouldn't it flag the 'Raiders' with the Criminal Flag FOR SO LONG AS THEY ARE HOLDING THE STOLEN GOODS, allowing everyone to attack them? That would certainly add a hell of a lot of risk to Raiding.

On the other hand, if a Settlement considers Raiding Outposts to be illegal, then it's a tactic they can't use in turn without going against their own laws and ramping up the 'Corruption' Development Index, as the Blog states. But at the same point, it might be the only way for a Settlement-Outpost to function at the beginning.

Raiding the Farm:

Let's be brutally honest. Only idiots will burn down the 'Farm'. Most Raiders/PvPers aren't going to be good crafters or gatherers. Every single choice and ability they have will be dedicated to blowing things up/stabbing things in the face/healing things while melting faces. They may have a few 'gather-focused' players to gather materials/resources while in-control of an Outpost, but most of them will be Combat-Focused Purists.

And I think they're gonna fall into two categories.

The 'Foxes' Raiders. These types are going to run in, take as much as they can, stay as long as they can and try to destroy the Outpost just for the 'Lulz'. "We took you thing, we broke it then we crapped on it! LOL NOOB QQ ROFLMAOBBQQUEENBEE and all that jazz.

The "Fox" Raiders are gonna be the morons. They 'Take and Break' and bring nothing else to the Raiding scene.

Why do I call them morons? Because sooner or later their antics will either cause a reactionary swing to the defence of Outposts from Goblinworks, which is going to make it harder and less profitable for anyone to Raid. And when they can no longer 'dominate' and ruin an Outpost, it's going to be "QQ the Game is too hard!" or "Stop defending the Noobs, they deserve it!" and the all important "OMG stop helping the filthy casuals!"

The next 'group' I see evolving is the "Farmer" Raiders.

These guys know that if an Outpost becomes a site of permanent drain of resources and 'un-fun', the Builders and Defenders will just down sticks and go home, and then nobody has fun.

They'll go in for an hour or two, take the resources, then leave before the damage to the Outpost becomes too severe.

They're not there to destroy the Outpost. They need the Outpost as much as the Builders/Defenders. These guys will have dedicated Fighters, dedicated Gatherers, and maybe even dedicated Movers to get the resources away asap.

"Farmer" Raiders aren't there to stampede the villagers and [redacted] the livestock. These players understand that their Raiding is best spread out over multiple targets, and a target is never hit more than once every few weeks, enough to keep the Outpost profitable for the Defenders and fun for the Builders.

Of course, if an Outpost is being too productive and the Settlement it's feeding is looking like it's going to be expanding towards the Raider's own Settlement/Outpost ... well, that's a different story.

But how to defend an Outpost when the bulk of Players may not be there?

Perhaps as an optional drain on the 'Parent' Settlement, the 'Child' Outpost could be outfitted with NPC Guards that, while not able to stop a dedicated Raiding Crew, can slow them down and send out NPC Messengers to the Settlement, which gives the Raiders perhaps 20 minutes of peace while the Messenger gets to the town to start gathering and set up their own defenses, while the Defenders not only send out more NPC Guards (Again, at cost to themselves) but can also send out angry Players, which may take another 25-35 minutes to arrive as people rush around, get their PvP gear together, organise defensive groups and saddle up.

Under this scenario, it's the final minutes of the 'hour' cycle of the Raid/Gather situation where things really heat up. The raiders may have had to deal with a sporadic attacks of lone defenders sniping at them, but now they've got a pissed off warband charging at their asses, and they've got a pile of resources slowing them down.

The other thing that springs to mind is that 'Gathering' in the wild often causes random events like monsters to pop up, if I recall.

Why not, if the Raid is occurring at a 'quiet time' for the majority of the server, to up the % of hostile NPCs spawning.

Raiders decide that a 3am Raid is their best bet, but whoops, turns out that in doing so they've also given the game a better than 60% chance of spawning a large and greedy Warband of Gnolls who've decided that they're going to show the 'stupid pinkies' how it's done. Now the Raiders not only have to deal with annoyingly tough-to-kill NPC Guards that are also alerting the few Defender Players still awake, but they've got fast moving and brutal Gnolls chewing on their backsides at the same time.

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Ideally our PvP skills should also double as PvE skills. No g!%-d$%ned PvP stats, please! They've ruined WoW's PvP aspects by making it all but impossible for beginning players to keep up with us veterans.

In regards to the Escalation vs Hideout point, I think a smart PvE Bandit will focus on a few 'talking' skills. Bluff the Goblins into giving you their treasure. Use Diplomacy to negotiate a modest tithe with the nearby camp of NPC Cultists and encourage them to spread, making them a valuable (and expendable) buffer against the Bounty Hunters after your arse. Use Sense Motive to evaluate if you'll be able to do the Diplomacy in the first place. Use Intimidate to cow the local pixie population into not turning you pink every time you cut through their grove.

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One man's Thief is another man's Hero.

On one side, you have a Thief stealing your lawfully accquired goods from your merchant empire.

On the other side, you have a Hero taking back the goods from a tyrant and a bully who made a cartel to corner the local markets.

There's no easy way to work out Alignment, since we all have our own takes on what is and is not an Evil/Lawful/Good/Chaotic act. All we can do is work within the framework of what Goblinworks gives us, and thus far they have stated that we can allow our Alignment to 'shift' naturally, or we can 'lock' our alignment in place and take the consequences of acting contrary to our chosen Alignment.

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There's also the point where a Settlement might find it easier to collect their Taxes in the form of Trade/Crafting Goods rather than Currency, as they might be able to on-sell the Goods for a higher price than they might get through the Currency they collect through the Taxes, or declaring they will accept 1 'unit' of Quarried Stone in place of 1 'unit' of Currency might be enough for them to stockpile the necessary components they need to build a stone wall around their settlement, rather than paying an overly-inflated cost to a Quarrier which would eat up more than what the Taxes would pay them.

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Now, something that's been bandied around is that Coin (let's refer to it as 'Currency' during this debate) is something that will be relatively limited in the Pathfinder World, at least at first, and the spread of currency will be semi-controlled by the 'Faucet' of Goblinworks-made/controlled Quests, found in Treasure in instanced 'Dungeons' and occasionally on some types of monsters.

So what happens if there's not enough Currency in the world?

At the risk of being thrown to the Torch-and-Pitchfork Mob (again) ... why not a secondary system of Barter and Material Goods in the place of Currency?

Fully controlled by the Players, Barter is a system where Player A and Player B negotiate between themselves, trading X amount of [Bags of Flour] for Y amount of [Skinned Rabbits].

Player B then goes to the next Farm/Tavern/Village/Town/WHATEVER IS G~#-D&#NED CLOSEST and trade some of his [Bags of Flour] for more goods, then moves on, trades some more of his [Bags of Flour] and other Trade Goods for more trade goods, so on and so forth.

And people are doing this everywhere. Goods are being shuffled around without needing long, painful merchant convoys, and the Smarter Merchants are running around trading for goods in one Hex that might be scarce, or even non-existant in another Hex, and making a profit in Goods and a small bit of Currency in that way.

Furthermore, would a selection of Trade/Crafting Goods be considered an acceptable substitute for Currency in terms of Quest-Rewards?

Party A and Party B are both sent out to gather Ore from a Wild Hex, knowing full well that the Miners they are escorting will inevitably attract the attention of nearby hostile NPCs and Bandit PCs, and demand a suitable payment in advance for their efforts.

Party A demands Currency up-front, while Party B accepts a majority of Crafting/Trade Goods and a smaller amount of Currency.

Both Parties survive, and the reward waiting for them is approximately the same in basic value. Party A has the benefit in that Currency is worth the same no matter where they go and is relatively light-weight, while Party B has the benefit in that their Trade/Craft Goods can go up in price if they head to the right Hex/Settlement.

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I'm not so worried about the 'Dead Ends' as I am about the 'fatigue' that the 'settling players', the Early Enrolers, might face having to build up the very first settlements.

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A random 2:00 am thought based upon the last few posts:
Krackerwurst's Codpiece.

This ornate bronze codpiece has been burnished to an eye-searingly bright finish, and the thick leather straps to hold it in place have many symbols of male virility carved into them. Judging from the proportions, however, it seems that Krackerwurst was either the size of an Ogre or had some rather deep-seated issues.

No body slot. Minor Enchantment.

When worn by a male, the codpiece grants the wearer a +2 diplomacy against females and a +2 bluff against males.

I don't think anyone would mind a bit of beefcake armor to balance out the glorious cheesecake.

I know I'd certainly get a giggle of having my big, burly Half-Orc don a pink tutu on the odd occasion, especially if I could organize the entire 'raid' to do so, purely for the hilarity of seeing the defenders standing there emoting /wat as an army of big, burly men in pink frilly tutus charge them.

This idea may or may not be funny, depending upon how much sleep and/or alcohol and/or pain medication you may or may not have had/not had.

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Random idea that came to me as I sit here with a 3-day-old headache and a raging fever.

Relics. What if the Relics are what we need to 'unlock' the final stages of the Settlements?

12 Relics. 3 Fighter-type Relics, 3 Rogue-type Relics, 3 Wizard-type Relics, 3 Cleric-type Relics.

Holding 1 Relic for X amount of time will allow your Settlement to achieve the 'final stage', ie 'maxing' out your Settlement's growth, but the trick is that the Relics will focus on a specific type of Development Index.

Fighter Type Relics might augment the Settlement's defenses, offenses or training costs of Fighters.

Rogue Type Relics might augment the Settlement's wealth-per-day ratios, diplomacy with NPC factions or training costs of Rogues.

Cleric Type Relics might augment the number and efficiency of healing spells that can be cast within the Settlement's borders, affect the Undead and Outsider-type Mobs in a variety of ways, depending upon the alignment of the Settlement in question and affect the training costs of Clerics.

Wizard Type Relics might augment the number and power of spells cast within the Settlement's borders, augment specific schools of magic and affect the training costs of Wizards.

So that's 12 'Settlements' that could reach their full potential ... but wait, there's more!

Grabbing a second Relic might unlock the ability to go from Settlement ... to City.

And I don't just mean "Here, have another building." I mean "Here, go expand your settlement to three or four times it's current size."

Doubling up on Relics of the same type may expand the effects of the Relics to allied players to each and every Hex controlled by the Settlement's primary faction, or unlock new, more powerful abilities.

Grabbing a Relic of a different type may grant you the abilities of both Relics, for example a Settlement that possesses a Fighter Relic and a Rogue Relic might have bonuses to defending itself and attempting diplomacy with NPC factions, while a different Settlement might have another Fighter Relic and Rogue Relic, and have bonuses to attacking other Settlements and increasing it's wealth-per-day.

Boom. We have a reason for Settlement to seriously consider going to war with each other, and unearthing a new Relic can make a player wealthy beyond their wildest dreams ... or turn their lives into a living hell as every Charter with dreams of becoming the biggest dog in the yard sends an endless array of Assassins after them.

To me, this gives a valid reason for Settlements to accept the 'At War' tag with each other, as it offers a real mechanical advantage to sacking the other Settlement in exchange for the expenditure of resources. Suddenly, sacking the Settlement of Jinglebells becomes very, very worth-while if they have a Relic that you want, while in turn they may be eager to accept your Declaration Of War because they want your relic for themselves.

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There's also building your team of friends to take advantage of the Friendly Fire.

Nobody is expecting the Mage/Wizard/Sorcerer to start lobbing fireballs with the rest of the Party mixing it up in the melee, but characters who have expended time and monies on Fire-Resistance Gear might actually be planning on using Friendly Fire, counting on Potions, Spells and Enchanted Gear to nullify or at least mitigate the lion's share of the damage, allowing them to keep pounding away while their walking artillery piece can just keep on shelling out damage without fear of outright killing their allies.

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Minor Crimes: Theft of minor items (less than 1000 currency), Petty Assault and Public Nudity.

Medium Crimes: Theft of items (between 1001 and 10,000 currency), assault with intent to kill, first possession of contraband items.

Serious Crimes: Theft of items (Over 10,001 currency's worth), murder, repeated possession of contraband items.

Capital Crimes: Attempted rebellion, arson, actively attempting to destroy
settlement structures, actively assisting enemy forces.


Minor Crimes might fall under, for theft, the cost of the items stolen + 10% of their full worth, scaling up an additional 10% per each offence within the last month, Petty Assault and Public Nudity might result in you having to go and work in the mines or lumber-mill and produce X-amount of resources to pay off your debt to society.

Medium Crimes might fall under, for theft, the cost of the items stolen + the forfeit of your currently equipped gear, Assault might land you with a much larger amount of resources to produce, and possession of the Contraband might result in not only a hefty fine and loss of privelages within that Settlement, but also the Guards forcing their way into your abode to look for more, and not being too gentle in their search.

Serious Crimes might result in banishment from the Hex itself for a set amount of time, or for repeat offenders, for life. At this stage you're not just running afoul of the Law every so often, you're actively participating in criminal activity.

Capital Crimes are basically a 'we're gonna kill you, take your gear, take your house and goods, and then to really grind some salt into that wound, we'll put a bounty on you if you ever set foot in our Hex again' situation.

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A % increase to the main 'abilities' of a Build would be a nice touch, a feather in the cap of a specialist as it were.

Let's say a 'Fighter' would gain a % more benefit from their armor class, a % more to their Fortitude-like saves, a % more to melee and non-magical ranged damage with weapons they have specialized in ... just something that makes them even better than any 'Generalist' could ever be.

The downside is the narrow-ness of their focus can leave them exposed in specific situations.

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I must admit, as a backer I've yet to recieve any emails about quick entry into the Beta, but the thought of being only a 'Fighter', 'Rogue', 'Cleric' or 'Wizard', while disappointing at first glance, is also quite interesting when you sit down and have a long hard think about the trials to come.

These are the four basic 'Classes' that make up an Iconic Party. Almost every class is built off a variant of these themes. Choosing these 'four' Builds means that Goblinworks is going to have a solid base of judging how the 'Light-Armor Melee', 'Heavy-Armor Melee', 'Armored Caster' and 'Unarmed Caster' interact with each other and the world around them.

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I have not stopped giggling. I can just imagine a trade-like channel ...

"WTB Goblin Balls!"

"Eww, dude, no."

"Hey, what you do with the Goblins' corpses after I'm done looting them is your own business, just don't make it public!"

"Sold in stacks of 2?"

"What possible use could you have for Goblin testicles?"

"NOOO! Goldshire followed us here!"

"How about I just sell you the whole Goblin and you do what you want with it?"

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Well so long as it's not the same Hex, every time, and the motive varies.

Richard Nine-Fingers might be a Slaver looking to build the world's first global empire.

Karl One-Eye might be a Necromancer looking to become the next Geb.

Sarah the Salacious might be the High Priestess of a Succubi-focused Cult.

Shrub might be a Druid looking to stop the 'insidious' advance of civilisation into the pristine Wilds.

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Also, Mr Dancey, I imagine that certain types of 'Escalations' would only build and spread to other hexes if left alone for long enough.

Imagine, a place 40-hexes away from the starting zones where a Green Dragon has enslaved the local populations, and it takes players anywhere from 6-9 months to even start getting halfway to that area ... that's gonna be one hellishly tough nut to crack, either to ally with, trade with or go to war against, with the Escalation having all that time to expand out into nearby hexes, entrench it's forces and then repeat the pattern.

Other Escalations might just burn out on their own, such as over-hunting of the local herbivores sends the local carnivores out into a killing frenzy to feed themselves until they are pruned down to levels where the slowly replenishing herbivore levels can sustain them again.

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True, but this also allows the slow build-up of a handful of Charters/Guilds/Companies into a single all-powerful economic juggernaught, able to buy out any 'rebels' or throw endless assassins at them till they quit the game or submit.

How do we STOP this sort of behavior? Obviously, gamers being gamers, somebody will figure out a way to get around any ruling on Goblinwork's behalf, but let's start with the obvious ones that already exist in most MMOs to-date.

Kill 'Em!: While viscerally pleasing to see some greasy farm-bot's head blunting the edge of your sword, as the game stands, you're going to take at least an alignment hit from the act, let alone the locals who might get antsy at you killing a 'merchant' or 'gatherer' for, to them, no good reason.

Of course, as the situation progresses and said Farm-Bot's antics become more noticeable, they might find fewer and fewer people are willing to come to their aid ...

One Market to Rule them All ..... NOT!!: While this method fragments the market, it also, as Leperkhaun pointed out, allows for greater prices the further from the source you're willing to go, but also creates an ever-widening opening for bandits and brigands to pilfer your produce.

On the other hand, sufficiently advanced 'Farm-Bot' consortiums will be able to 'seed' players or even low-level multi-box accounts within various cities and settlements to keep an eye on the markets and raise prices accordingly across various Hexes in a 'cartel' method, ensuring that nobody can sell for lower than they do, and that they are the only 'legitimate' seller of necessary goods.

Time to take another alignment beating and hire a few Assassin Guilds ...

Welcome to my Little Black Book: Inevitably, players actively working the markets to try and destabilize Settlements, or worst case scenario, the entire Game Economy, will be ejected at sword-point (or worse) from civilized territories and blacklisted, if not banned, from entering said Hexes.

This isn't foolproof, as they might end up working with willing partners to go back into the settlement on behalf of the now-exiled character and continue on as planned, albeit now it's with split profits, so their final payout is lower, often much lower than is profitable.

Settlements might solve this by ensuring anyone under a certain amount of time-in-game or level has to sell their goods through another, trusted player of the Controlling Faction, who gives them a set rate and sells the goods at another, higher set rate, ensuring that the Controlling Faction can keep inflation to a level they feel is comfortable/necessary to their own goals.

Once players reach a certain threshold of not only skill, but trust, the controlling faction might allow them to sell direct with the understanding that cartel-like actions or rampant price-gouging will not be tolerated, and the Farm-Bots lose their avenue in that Settlement, being forced to move on to another slice of civilisation and hoping their reputation hasn't preceeded them.

The mailman might ring twice, but the Bandit demands only once: Whether shipped by NPCs or Players, cargo, mail and other goods are vulnerable to Bandits, Monsters, Seasonal Hazards and worst of all, other Players.

While annoying, this also gives players looking to derail up-and-coming Market Cartels and known Bot-Farmers by isolating and attacking caravans and merchants carrying their goods specifically. A few days of getting every single shipment hit and stolen will set back anyone.

This method, however, also has a tendency to come back and bite everyone in the long-term as more and more people come to realise that Banditry pays a lot better than woodcarving or farming ....

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That's fine, you stay out of the Taverns, we'll stay out of your Library, win/win for all!

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Well, given that EvE is a big inspiration for Pathfinder Online, we'd like have 'Tree' Skills, from which other, specific skills branch out from.

For example, There might be a couple of Crafting Trees, depending upon what you choose, but let's say there's an 'Alchemy', 'Smithing', 'Farming' and 'Building' series of trees available.

Upon reaching Rank III In Building, you're given the option to specialise into Wood, Stone or Brick. Ranks I and II have taught you how to put together buildings from wood, stone and brick, how to make doors, bridges and other utility items, but now you've got a choice on how you're going to make your mark in the economy.

Wood's quick, cheap and relatively inexpensive, but is very vulnerable to fire and doesn't last too long under a sustained assault. It's a good 'Branch' skill to put up quick barricades and wooden walls around a settlement at the beginning, allowing a Wood-specialised builder to move in quickly, build substitute structures for a Chapter/Charter/Guild/Company to occupy while the other crafters get started on more durable defences and buildings.

Stone is arguably the hardest common material that players can build with, but it's expensive and takes a while to drag the materials to the site. Still, you don't want to build your fortress out of twigs, and stone will weather almost any assault without complaint.

Brick is the middle ground, cheaper than stone but more expensive than wood, and requires some prep-time to turn clay, or mud and straw, into actual bricks. That said, it's more durable than wood and is an excellent material to build non-essential buildings out of, able to take a beating from anything short of siege-engines or a pissed off Arch-Wizard.

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Now, this is just theory-crafting and discussion, as Goblinworks has not released anything concrete about how many 'free' structures can be built on a Hex besides the Settlement itself.

What about Players who, through overpopulation or choice, cannot build their own house, or indeed find a room to claim as their own, inside a Settlement, yet they have the wealth to build their own?

I have a couple of theories.

Each 'Hex' is broken up into 6 or 7 smaller Hexes that occupy the space within it, I believe, with a variety of terrain types for the 'Hex' that is controlled. IE, a single Chapter might control a Primary Hex (the larger one), and inside that Primary Hex is 6 or 7 different terrain types, for the purpose of this discussion we'll call them Micro-Hexes.

Each Micro-Hex has some of the semi-hidden 'Hideouts' scattered about, as well as some building locations that may or may not be suitable for specific buildings.

You wouldn't build a Lumber Mill in the Plains, and you don't have a Quarry next to a lake, for example.

Farms, I think, would be the more likely candidate for 'anywhere you can', but depending upon the type of Primary Hex you end up with, the terrain type of the Micro-Hexes is going to be a big roadblock for most Chapters to work with in the first few months.

Let's say players want to build a Farm. Start off small, single room building for sleeping/storage, barn to hold the animals and produce, cheap fence around a starter-size field/pasture, yada yada yada.

Over the next few weeks, the players have managed to build the farm up to a very profitable level, making the original 'house into a large 2-storey structure with a basement, with plenty of individual rooms for the 'workers' to occupy, solid walls and a slate roof to make the 'house' a fortress in case of the bandit attack, several barns now, dozens of fields and pastures, it's looking good.

But how many Farms are we going to be able to build on this Micro-Hex? Just the one, or dozens? Is there a maximum size a Farm can grow to, necessitating all the Farmers specialise in individual types of farming, to ensure a wide selection of produce is available and that nobody is in direct competition with each other, or can a Farm spread out indefinitely?

Likewise, Lumber Mills can become insatiable if the demand for wood for building structures, for firewood, for crafting of weapons and other tools, and it might be possible for a Lumber Mill that is irresponsibly run to clear-cut a Forest-type Micro-Hex, causing a great many problems, such as now-homeless monsters, furious Druids and Fey incursions or environmental problems that might spread to other Micro-Hexes within the Primary.

And what about homes? Building a 'House' outside of a Settlement might be possible, with the right money to the right person, but obviously Goblinworks wishes to avoid the 'wall of sheds' that other MMOs that have allowed freeform buildings have endured, with Guilds of Griefers going out of their way to 'lock' other players within areas.

I could see people getting sick of the 'noise' of other players going out with some friends and making a 'lodge' in a relatively secluded area, and over time, this might even become a mini-settlement on it's own as the need to make their own crafting/training stations to keep up with their increasing skills makes the owners of the 'lodge' build up their little paradise.

Over the course of several weeks ... there are 2 'Settlements' within the Primary Hex, although within 2 different Micro-Hexes. What can/will the Controlling Faction of the Primary Hex do? Do they welcome the increasing Development Indexes this 'Secondary' Settlement will provide for their domain, do they (rightly) fear this new Settlement might very well become the home base of a rival/hostile Company/Charter/Guild?

Can individual Buildings outside of a Settlement be razed to the ground? How many individual Buildings can be built outside of a Settlement before the Game goes 'no more' because all the development sites are taken?

I could fully see large Merchant Charters/Guilds building their own 'safe houses' outside of the Settlements, where convoys of their people can pull in and store goods under lock and key, before a second convoy comes in to pick up the items and finish the job. Rather than a single Convoy having to wend it's way through multiple Hexes, having 2 or 3 convoys 'passing the baton', if that makes sense, allows the Merchants to get back to their home Hexes quickly to keep an eye on more sales/chances for profit/'home' warehouses and given the sizes of the Primary and Micro-Hexes, also ensures nobody is stuck in the saddle for 5+ hours to deliver turnips to Sir Doucheadin.

That said, having a 'drop off' point also makes a solid target for Bandits and Raiders, who now don't have to camp every deer-trail and smuggler's route in hopes of catching a Convoy with it's collective pants down.

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Alternatively, much like with EvE, players may be given the option to 'be' Goblins for a few days as part of an event, with their class choices and roughly equal gear to the normal toons generated using a Goblin model, and then are given the mission of attacking a settlement within a week.

Would be rather interesting to see a hundred or so 'leveled' Goblins with more NPC Goblins following them charging the Settlements in character.

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Comrade Anklebiter wrote:
You might want to check with your local International Brotherhood of Teamsters local.

I think I just found you the perfect T-Shirt to supply to your counter-protesters!

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Given their 'God Hates [X]' message, may I make a few suggestions.

Get the 'alternative' crowd involved if possible. You would be amazed how many gay/lesbian/alterative support groups and people actively hate the Westboro Church and will throw a great deal of support your way if you plan to peacefully oppose these irritants.

Get retired soldiers and police officers involved and get them to help you manage and control your counter-march people, as they will likely have both the knowledge and the discipline to maintain order without stepping across the legal line.

And THAT is all the Westboro care about. Legalities and the ability to sue you. They will put their children up the front of of their pickets as both shields and as a method to enrage people even further, then purposefully aggravate and hurt people who are already hurting, in some of the worst ways a Human being can, to try and provoke a violent response so they can pursue litigation.

I cannot stress how important it is that you clear this with your local government and police, and make sure that everyone who is coming knows full well that they cannot fall to the same level as the Westboro folks. Not one racial slur, one anti-religious line or anything that can even be remotely construed as a threat or slander can be allowed to come from your people.

Westboro has made a fortune off litigation. Don't feed the beast.

If you can, line the front of your counter-protest with devout folks of Christians and Catholics (and other religions, but I name these two for a reason) and ask them to start saying prayers asking God to forgive the Westboro people for their ways and their hate. Ironicly, facing true Faith that is not based upon chasing people for money and attention, the Westboro will likely get even angrier and probably start to actively push the line of what they can get away with legally, or if we're lucky, walk away.

Couple more things:

DO NOT PREVENT THEM FROM LEAVING. If they park their vehicles somewhere, feel free to have your Counter-Protest blockade them from getting within a set distance (as dictated by your local government or ordanances, as the case may be) whatever event they are intended to crash, but do not block them from going around the event (and you can act as bodyguards, if you will, for the event, blocking them from going TO the event) and most importantly, do not block them from returning to their vehicles.

FILM EVERYTHING. Everyone gets a camera, a digital phone with a camera or a video recorder and tape everything. Upload directly to YouTube if you can from as many accounts as you can, and make sure what you're doing is in the LEGAL right. The Westboro 'Church' is an entity that makes it' living through litigation, and you can bet your bottom dollar that they will be actively pushing for you or another member of the Counter-Protest to make a mistake they can capitalize upon.

LOUDER THAN WORDS. Dance. Play Music in theme with whatever event they plan to crash, and play it just under the local government laws for 'noise pollution'. Put up signs asking people to shout "God loves everyone, even you!" as they pass the Westboro pickets. Fight their negativity with positive actions. The louder and crueler they get, the louder and more positive, more friendlier you get in return, until they either lose the will to fight you, or they break the law, and the local government/police can move in to take them down.

If it's a Funeral, start shouting praises to those that have died, and thank them loudly, over the top of the Westboro protesters.

If it's a celebration of gay rights, play loud, happy music that fits the scene and dance. Have a party (within legal limits) and piss them off immensely when you refuse to let them make you angry.

These 'people' thrive on negativity and on hurting people to make them lash out and then be vulnerable to the laws being twisted. Fight back by being positive and untouchable, and give the Westboro an even fouler reputation in the process.

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I'd say WoW's biggest 'fault' is that there's no 'choice' for the Players.

Hey, you're Horde ... eat a !@#$, you're our Red-Shirt Bad-Guys for this expansion.

Hey, you're Alliance ... eat a %^&*, you're going to White-Knight this expansion.

Honestly, if there was a fantasy MMO out there that had the sheer polish of WoW, I'd be there.

Raging a bit here:
If I may point out, if PvP is going to be a main selling point of the game, please don't follow the WoW Model! Back in the day, it was World PvP, and it was glorious, it was chaotic, and it was fun ... unless you were a Warrior without a Healer in your pocket.

Then we got Battlegrounds. Then Arenas. It sucked for the most part, although Wintergrasp on RP realms was a lot of fun, because most people didn't turn up in PvP armor, and it was back to skill, tactics and team-work instead of throwing ever-increasing stacks of resilience at each other and seeing whose keyboard snapped first.

It was tacking on yet another grind for gear that was only useful within a single segment of the game and only for a short period of time at that, and may the Gods have mercy on your soul if you so much as skipped one week, because if you fell behind the grinding curve for better PvP Armor/Weapons/Gear, you'd inevitably have an even harder struggle to keep up with those people who could sit there and do nothing but grind under-geared folks into the asphalt for more honor/valor/maguffinite.

If we're going to PvP, NO PVP STATS PLEASE. No grinding for gear that serves one single purpose and that will be trumped by the next 'season'. If we're going to PvP, make PvP based upon our skills, our strategies and our teams, not upon an artificial and quite frankly irritating pair of stats that make it easier or harder for an opposing player to damage you/be damaged by you.

Obviously with a Multi-Million-Subscriber game, you can't have too many branching paths, but what a lot of players I speak to in-game and on the forums, there is a lot of b%+~%ing that the writers seem to think Horde Players WANT to be Villains and Alliance Players WANT to be Heroes.

The whole appeal of the original WoW Online Game was that it followed in the wake of the World of Warcraft III game, in which neither side was 'good' and neither side was 'evil'. Everything was shades of grey, each faction had reasons for and against their actions, and in vanilla the quests never seemed to point the finger of Evil at anyone directly, although you were often made to squirm over some of the quests.

Burning Crusade was fantastic, although some of the gear looked like we'd mugged Rainbow Bright ....

Wrath ... we start to see some 'Everquest' leaking into WoW, the Monstrous Races are the bad Guys, the Tolkien Races are the good Guys ... eh, drama is good for the story, so we let it slide.

Then Cataclysm. MOTHER. OF. GOD. Players were given no way to point out, as the people who pretty much SINGLE HANDEDLY BEAT THE LICH KING, THE DEMI-GOD OF UNDEATH, to their Faction Leaders that engaging in pissing matches over territory when the whole world was quite literally crumbling under everyone's feet was a bad idea.

Then comes Mists of Pandaria. The overall story-telling is awesome. What sucks is that it's an OH MY GOD grind for gear, several factions literally cannot be compeleted without first maxing out mini-factions within them, which makes it even more grindy-er, once again the Horde is rail-roaded into liking their despicable Warchief-Destined-To-Screw-Up-Like-His-Father, the (in)famous Mary-Sue characters of a certain person continually show up and rub themselves in our faces like an overly affectionate cat that needs to stop sleeping in it's own litter tray and the Alliance gets ... to pick up the pieces and be the bigger man.

I mean what?

Honestly, I love WoW, but it's obvious that it needs a major overhaul, or they need to make a WoW-2 and accept that the game engines can only handle a 10-12 year lifespan.

That's the thing with MMOs. We're not playing to grind. We're playing to have fun.

Sweatshops are not fun. Grinding for months only to replace your gear with the next patch is not fun. Having to perform the same dailies over and over and over and over because the only real 'content' in the game is at the very end is most certainly not fun at all.

A Sandbox is always changing, always evolving, by the Players actions and in-actions as well as scripts running in the background and actual Mod shenanigans. PvP is not my cup of tea, but even if I'm not up to my eyeballs in other player's body parts, I can still contribute, and there's an actual risk of losing everything to the opposing players if I don't do my part!

A Themepark is basically left to totter along on it's own, because there's nothing for the owners to do except keep replacing the dead gerbils when a server crashes or quests start to bug for players. PvP is not my cup of tea, and quite frankly I avoid it except for World PvP because as soon as the Battleground or Arena is over, the worst I'm going to endure is level 1 alt b!$~#ing or yet another strategy session with half the PvP Team goofing off making fart noises in the Vent.

Nobody minds playing second fiddle to an NPC. We object to being ignored after saving the world how many times now? There is no history in a Theme-Park MMO because nobody is ever different. We all do the same quests, get the same gear, get rail-roaded by the same writers and experience the same soul-sucking grinds.

Goblin Squad Member

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There's also the counter to that, with the Bandits having a Wizard who can teleport them as well.

Eventually, people are going to isolate Bandit Hideouts through simple triangulation. Let's say a small forest, known as Briarheart's Lament, is the site of multiple bandit attacks and SAD's.

The ruling Chapter, getting pissed off at this brazen assault on the merchants bringing wealth and goods to their Hexes, tracks down the merchants and gets them to pin-point where they were attacked.

With a few dozen points, the Ruling Chapter can then start to isolate where the Bandits are likely located in the Hex, adding in information like times people are attacks, how many of the Bandits there are and how well they are equipped, and start to offer bounties for the finding of the Bandit hideout.

Now here's where the Bandits are going to rely heavily upon traps. A suitable 'feint' is to lay a bucket-load of painfully obvious, flashy traps outside a large, ominous cave and make the Players hunting them think the Bandits have a 'Hideout' in the cave, when in fact the Hideout itself might be in a much less obvious location, protected with far less obvious traps.

In counter, the Ruling Chapter might line the sides of the roads with spike-filled trenches and clear the trees back 50 feet from the road, to ensure the Bandits lack any hiding places and that they can't easily swarm the merchant convoys from the sides on foot, meaning the bandits will have to waste actions putting down structure to allow them to cross the trenches, or will need high speed, either through Class/Badge abilities or mounts such as Horses to clear the trenches, giving the Guards defending the Merchants time to fire off volleys of arrows/spears/fireballs/rabid dire skunks and really put some pain on the bandits.

Goblin Squad Member

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Hardin Steele wrote:
I hope they are imposing enough to require a few days worth of planning, organizing and building siege equipment. The truly awesome escalations should be a force to behold and (hopefully) will threaten the very existence of some of the largest settlements. That will be a ways away, but I think it will take long enough for the player base to become powerful enough to contain the routine escalations, much less beating down a large invasion or settlement force.

The best thing, Haradin? It will take us several months, if not years, to make our way across to the other side of the 'map' if relative scale remains appropriate to the game and the game's engine. And assuming people can make the journey, without dying and losing all their stuff, mapping and exploring, consider that the further you get from 'home', the harder it will be to repair and replenish your supplies ...

And all during that time, NPCs are doing their thing ...

A long time into the game, we may be seeing a small army of Goblinoids in control of a 20-hex zone, AND THEY'RE COMING OUR WAY.

Individually, Goblins are a joke. Hundreds of Goblins being lashed on by a score of Hobgoblin Slavemasters to soften up the Settlements' defenses for the main Hobgoblin Army isn't just going to put the Settlements in danger, it's going to put the entire region on the knife-edge. If the Players don't start turning on this threat, everything is at risk!

The joy of a Sandbox Game is that you've got all this stuff going on in the background, whether you're there or not. Your actions or inactions help shape the world within this game.

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Maybe we're not epic enough to meet the requirements?


Yeah, that was terrible, bring on the torches and pitch-forks.

Goblin Squad Member

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And this makes people who don't WANT to PvP important, as they'll be the trail-blazers, the scouts and the diplomats who find out these things while the PvPers run around stampeding each other's villagers and [redacted] the livestock.

And since it seems (according to the Blogs) there may be Item Decay, as well as necessities only a flourishing settlement can provide, the PvPers will be encouraged to go kick these Escalations down and take the shinies before their conflicts can take place.

Just one thing ... a true Escalation should not just 'spring up' overnight. We're talking a week or two Real Time that we start to see hints, then another week or two Real Time that we see the effects start to push into our view, and then a week or two Real Time after that that REALLY grabs us by the ear and goes "HEY! LINK! LISTEN!" and we're dealing with a full-blown Escalation-based invasion into the nearest Hexes, likely our own.

Nothing quite like a pitched PvP battle getting disrupted by a sneak-attack by Drow Slavers with Troglodyte Slave-Soldiers charging with their Masters' whips cracking at their backs.

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